I feel no need for any other faith than my
I’m grateful to say that two of my closest friends in this life are Susan’s parents, Bob & Mary Lou Jacoby. For over twenty years I have been blessed to be an adopted and beloved son in their glorious family. Heartfelt kindness is their life signature: a genuinely expressed, thoughtful appreciation for each member of their family — and all who are privileged to intersect and share in their rich life journey. Now in their early 80’s, “Baba” and Mary Lou continue to serve as remarkable role models for me, and exemplify what my friend David Whyte has bittersweetly referred to as the opportunity we all have of “growing younger towards our death.” (For example, Baba has recently taken up learning the violin and still plays tennis a few mornings a week, and Mary Lou has recently become an enthusiastic fan of pro basketball and loves the Lakers!)
I have long sensed that my later years in this life will be the sweetest. Ever since I was a child, I’ve been steadily on the lookout for those in the later seasons of their life who still have a bright light shining in their eyes. As you know well, encountering these folks is a rare find. With curiosity, I love to talk with them about how they have chosen to live, how they keep their heart energies awake and flowing.
The life I want to live combines a close relationship with
the natural world and natural beauty, simplicity, a close relationship
with my subconscious mind, living slow, kindness and living with
gratitude for the gift of life by offering back the best of what is
deep inside me. Lately, I’ve been summarizing it all in my
conversations with myself as “Quiet Beauty.”
~ Rod MacIver
Baba and Mary Lou — and many other seasoned, awake travelers who have shined graciously and brightly throughout their journey — have passed along many valuable keys to the art of living a well-embraced, fulfilling life, including:
~ A delicious love of learning, of opening to enlivening new experiences and expressions regularly
~ A willingness to move into forgiveness — genuinely and graciously — with themselves and others
~ Curiosity and playfulness, and bringing these magical qualities into their relationships with others
~ Honoring and tending to their physical bodies as a foundation for healthy living into their later years
~ Exercising tender compassion for weaknesses and errors as a powerful healing balm on their journey
~ Steadily sharing their heartfelt generosity and kindness with others
by Mary Oliver
Everyone should be born into this world happy
and loving everything.
But in truth it rarely works that way.
For myself, I have spent my life clamoring toward it.
Halleluiah, anyway I’m not where I started!
And have you too been trudging like that, sometimes
almost forgetting how wondrous the world is
and how miraculously kind some people can be?
And have you too decided that probably
is ever easy?
Not, say, for the first sixty years.
Halleluiah, I’m sixty now, and even a little more,
and some days I feel I have wings.
I am touched by the extraordinarily beautiful Tibetan woman in the photograph above, and how a lifetime of love is etched and shining from her face. Whatever season of life you are immersed in now, may your heart’s kindness blossom with age.
In Love, Gavin